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Please address my concerns.
Dec 30, 2007

Dear Sir, I desperately need your help.I was assisting a Hysterectomy procedure, towards the end of the same, when I was carrying out the "closure", essentially suturing the skin over the abdomen, I sustained a "deep prick" with the suture needle, on my thumb.As far as I remember, there was no visible blood on the needle, and more vitally, the patient's HIV Status is Negative by ELISA method, performed pre-operatively.The incident has, I must confess, caused anxiety.Immediately after the procedure, I walked out of the OT, and sought information from the CDC Guidelines. It clearly states that "more severe" occupational related incidents, such as deep pricks, etc.,from HIV Negative sources, No PEP Warranted.I do ofcourse completely believe in the guidlines...And please Dear Dr.Bob, write to me and help me reconfirm my faith in the CDC guidelines.Please...

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

I absolutely concur with the CDC guidelines and agree PEP would not be warranted for the potential occupational exposure you describe. However, despite that, I am concerned that after the needle stick you walked out of the OT and sought information from the CDC guidelines, rather than filling out an incident report and following the policy and procedures that should be in place at your institution for evaluation of occupational exposures to bloodborne pathogens! Had you followed the established policy and procedures, your fears could have been calmed much sooner. Plus you would have also been screened for hepatitis if indicated. So, while I certainly agree PEP is not warranted, I would suggest you re-familiarize yourself with the protocol for potential occupational exposures. It could be lifesaving in the future.

Happy Healthy Holidays.

Dr. Bob



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